Here's where to find the good times and the best art:
Colorado Photographic Arts Center, 1070 Bannock Street
Through November 20
The best photographers don’t just make pretty pictures. They practice science, too. How much is left to luck is up to the artist, of course, but any professional needs to know how to control the inner workings of the machine we call a camera and, in some cases, manipulate chemicals to create cool imagery. CPAC’s new show, Processing Narratives, demonstrates the myriad ways such tools help photographers go where no one has gone before, as seen through the work of Heidi Kirkpatrick, Marcy Palmer, Mariana Pereira Vieira and Melanie Walker.
Alejandra Abad, Heirlooms
PlatteForum, 2700 Arapahoe Street
Through October 15
PlatteForum resident artist Alejandra Abad wove personal stories gathered from ArtLab interns into the multimedia installation Heirlooms, which serves as a map of entwining communities and shared values. It’s a great introduction to PlatteForum’s new digs at the Savoy in Five Points, where program director Michael Gadlin will be taking the reins from Kim Estes McCarty over the next few weeks. For an in-depth discussion of the exhibition, listen to Abad’s episode of the Art Moves podcast.
Fare Well, Dear West
Artworks Center for Contemporary Art, 310 North Railroad Avenue, Loveland
Through November 27
Former Artworks photographer Bob Campagna left Loveland and moved to Iowa last spring, but he says his love for Colorado and the West will never die, as shown by his numerous collections of photos of the Western landscape taken over the past forty years. Compagna calls Fare Well, Dear West a love letter to the region's beauty, but it’s not entirely a goodbye.
Lio Bravo Bumbakini, Stories From a Daydream
Understudy, 890 C 14th Street
Through October 31
Raised in Belgium with roots in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lio Bravo Bumbakini often sources his African heritage in lively and diverse works. He’ll take over Understudy (in the plaza at the Colorado Convention Center) this month for Stories From a Daydream, his first solo show, which unfolds as an immersive installation honoring his ancestral ties to Pygmies of the Ituri rainforest, famous for their polyrhythmic chants. After the opening reception, visiting hours at Understudy are Thursdays through Sundays, noon to 6 p.m.
Bell Projects, 3525 Walnut Street
Through October 24
Bell Projects flashes a group exhibition with works by emerging artists Robbie Barriera, LiaNesa Fearing, Ariel Jackson, Ry La, Garrett Moore, Holly Nordeck and Whitney Wells, who dwell on pop themes and creatures.
Sally Centigrade, 445 South Saulsbury Street, Unit 4E, Lakewood
Sally Centigrade favorite PeeMonster, aka Deidre Morton, is back at the Belmar art space with a new clutch of her fly-off-the-shelf pencil drawings of strange, doll-like girls, here caught in the sweeter moments suggested by the show’s title, Embrace. See PeeMonster’s Instagram for a short, sweet preview.
Virginia T. Coleman, Scaled to Space
Next Gallery, Art Hub, 6851 West Colfax Avenue, Lakewood
Through October 24
Next members Heidi Calega and Virginia T. Coleman unleash solos this weekend: Calega contributes intricate “trash art” mosaics made from leftover supplies, odds and ends picked up off the street over years of traveling, and her kids’ cast-off toys, while Coleman showcases her practice of matching finished metal sculptures to her preliminary sketches. The group show Movement continues in the community gallery.
Victor Escobedo, Falling Leaf
Alto Gallery, RiNo ArtPark, 1900 35th Street, Suite B
Through October 30
Victor Escobedo, a current RedLine resident artist whose roots in Mayan culture often inspire his work, christens Alto’s brand-new space at the RiNo ArtPark with an exhibition of new and old works, including handmade clay ceremonial masks, marionettes and paintings. At the opening, groove to the sounds of Felix Fast4ward and ambient soundscapes by James Jewkes.
Visceral Vicinities: Altars, Ritual, the In-Between
INTERPLAY: Art + Opera
BRDG Project, 1553 Platte Street
Through November 1
BRDG Project celebrates Día de los Muertos with a spiritual group show curated by and including the work of Cal Duran and Cherish Marquez, who’ve mined the Denver community for renderings of the ancestral homage in various cultures. The second exhibition at BRDG, INTERPLAY: Art + Opera, is indeed a paean to what might be the most dramatic of all the performing arts. Also a group endeavor, the show is inspired by a live operatic performance experienced in advance by the artists; at 7:30 p.m., soprano Leah Podzimek, mezzo-soprano Kira Dills-DeSurra and pianist Jessica Nilles Kressin will reprise that performance for your listening pleasure.
Día de los Muertos Exhibit: Lazarus
Firehouse Art Center, 667 Fourth Avenue, Longmont
Through November 7
Día de los Muertos Exhibition
Longmont Museum, 4th Avenue and Main Street, Longmont
Through November 7
All of Longmont is in on the town’s ever-growing Día de los Muertos roster of intertwining celebrations that happen this weekend, with anchoring Day of the Dead art shows at Firehouse Art Center and the Longmont Museum that continue through early November.
Dan Lam and Jaz Harold, Soft Touch
Black Book Gallery, 3878 South Jason Street
Through November 6, by appointment
Black Book opens its doors for one night to introduce new works by Dan Lam and Jaz Harold, a pair of lowbrow artists working in polyurethane foam, crystals, silicone and fiber to create wonderfully blobby and colorful sculptures. After the October 9 opening, visit the gallery by appointment.
Lumonics Light & Sound Gallery, 800 East 73rd Avenue, #11
Saturday, October 9, 8 p.m.
Lumonics, which seems to be everywhere these days, reprises its in-house Lumonics Immersed light-sculpture show combining art with special effects, original music and video by the late Dorothy Tanner and longtime collaborator Mark Billard. Treat your eyes!
ILA Gallery, 209 Kalamath Street, Suite 12
Through November 9
Family Fun Day and Opening Reception: Saturday, October 9, 1 to 10 p.m.
ILA Gallery brings back its Halloween spectacular with Creepshow2, a huge group endeavor with spooky artwork by more than forty invited local and national artists. Kids are welcome, as are costumes, preferably creepy ones; complimentary drinks for adults will be provided by PBR and Suerte Tequila, and Chamoy Boy will serve fresh fruit cups for the kiddos.
inVISIBLE | hyperVISIBLE Panel talk: Asian American Women, Race, Gender and Religion
RedLine, 2350 Arapahoe Street
Sunday, October 10, 11 a.m.
In conjunction with inVISIBLE | hyperVISIBLE, a reaction by Asian-American artists to cultural disparities and stereotypes they’ve encountered in America, Dr. Nami Kim and Dr. Christine Pae will appear in conversation with moderator Boyung Lee to discuss their feminism-tinged views on the subject.